Key West Mayor Craig Cates gives Tradesman Appreciation Day the ultimate shout-out

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Key West Mayor Craig Cates gave us a shout-out last week in a Letter to the Editor in the Key West Citizen. Plus he’s proclaiming Sept. 21 Tradesman Appreciation Day for all of Key West. How cool is that? We’ve posted the letter below since you can’t access it online…

In March 1994, Key West sculptor John Martini installed his 8-foot iron sculpture, “Where’s Jimbo and the Other Giants of the Building Trade,” at The Green Parrot Bar, where it still resides. The celebration that followed the installation became the first Tradesman’s Appreciation Day at the Parrot.

National Tradesmen Day is Sept. 21, and this year The Green Parrot celebrates Tradesman Appreciation Day, on the same day.

This wouldn’t be Key West if the bar didn’t add its own twist to the celebration. John Vagnoni, the longtime general manager of the Parrot, told me for him and his patrons, the celebration is about all the workers of Key West, from the cab driver, the bartender, the server, the baker, the truck driver and all those working on our island, as well as the traditional tradesmen, the carpenter, plumber, roofer and electrician.

The American worker in all fields of endeavor deserves to be recognized and celebrated for the outstanding work he or she does, as John said, “to grease the skids of our lives.” Our recognition of these men and women continues today, 18 years later, thanks to John Martini’s and John Vagnoni’s vision.

I will be out of town on Sept. 21, but wanted to pay tribute to the tradesmen and women of Key West and thank them for their hard work, and I want to thank John and his staff at The Green Parrot for keeping Tradesman’s Appreciation Day alive and well in Key West.

As mayor, I have decreed Friday, Sept. 21, 2012, Tradesman’s Appreciation Day in Key West and John will unveil the proclamation during this year’s celebration.

Mayor Craig Cates
Key West